October 17, 2008

Mercer Mills Inc... aka Chet's House!

Mercer Mills Inc is located in Christiana, PA along the Octorara Creek. It is a private collection owned and maintained by Chester Marron containing room after room FULL of paintings, drawings, prints, and sculptures by various Pennsylvania impressionists, as well as endless other great things tucked in every nook and cranny. The collection has a particular focus on works created in Yellow Springs at PAFA's country school. It also houses Chets extensive collection of instruments which he plays and restores.
Dorcas Kunzie Weidner is the late wife of Chet, and was a student at the PAFA Country School. The beginnings of this collection were saved by Dorcas and her former husband, Roswell Weidner, who was also a former student and then Professor at both the Country School and PAFA's Center City location.
After the Country School closed its doors in 1952, Dorcas and Roswell moved out to Mercer Mills, and brought the start of their collection with them. Since then, Chet has been steadily adding to it; to the point that it has become certainly the most comprehensive collection from the PAFA Country School, as well as of the Chester County impressionists.

We here at Project Portal took a trip out to the Mill during the weekend residency to check it all out! The paintings from the PAFA school served as our "portal" into the past and gave us a visual base and understanding of part of the history of Historic Yellow Springs; from which we could begin our own project.
Below are just a few photos to give you a sense, or perhaps a reminder of the place! We will be including a selection of works from Chet's collection in the exhibition on November 1st.

October 12, 2008

Show Card

Show Cards are currently available at FLUXspace.

August 19, 2008

Video from Nick Cassaway

"Tent Town, USA"
by Nick Cassaway, Residency Artist

August 18, 2008

Countdown: 75 More Days Until Project Portal Exhibition!

First up, hope that everyone involved with the weekend had a great time. Rob Lukens and John Matthews, we owe you fellows big time! Thanks so much for stepping up and helping out.

A few people have sent pictures from the weekend. Nick Cassaway sent these items, and Austin Lee has sent us this slideshow, and a great animated gif. If anyone else has any photos, we'll post them as we get them.

A drop off date for artwork has yet to be set. We will let you know about this ASAP.

Again, artists, as a reminder, please keep us posted on your activity, if there is anything that you need, and if you have any specific requirements as far as space. As we get this information, we will post it here. At this point, we know this:

John Greiner has requested the window in the back room of the second floor.
Kati Geggenheimer has requested the wall space with the shelf across from John.
Carl Marin may have requested the Diamond Spring House, but that has yet to be solidified.

PLEASE SEND A SHORT REQUEST FOR YOUR SPACE WITH AN EXPLANATION OF YOUR PLANS. Be sure to include special needs (i.e. electricity, holes drilled, etc.) and a quick sketch if possible (you can scan a drawing and attach it with your proposal). There are lots of parenthesis here, sorry. But please do this, otherwise, we will assume that you are fine with wherever we decide to put you.

It was a great weekend, hope everyone enjoyed it.

August 09, 2008

Countdown to Residency & Community Picnic Press Release!

The Residency is growing ever closer, and we are growing ever excited! One more week to go!

Artists, you should all attempt to schedule a car pool of sorts, it will help with your cost, our cost, and you can use a H.O.V. lane and make Jay-Z references while you are in it.

Everyone else, The Community Picnic, scheduled for August 16th at 5:30pm, is an event open to the public. Invite your friends, your neighbors, your high school art teachers, and your animals!

In case you didn't get the press release, here it is:

Project Portal Artists Come to Chester Springs

Today, history is repeating itself in the Chester Springs through Project Portal, a partnership between Historic Yellow Springs and the FLUX Space of Philadelphia. On August 15 to 17 a group of contemporary artists, affiliated with the FLUX Space, will take up residence in the village of Yellow Springs to experience what attracted students from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts here 80 years ago.

From 1916 to 1952, the village of Chester Springs in Chester County was a vibrant arts center as the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts Country School. Renowned artists such as Daniel Garber and William Lathrop taught at the school, famed photographer Eduard Steichen photographed the village, and N.C. Wyeth was known to visit frequently to offer critiques of student works.

What they see, hear and feel during those three days will be interpreted into an exhibition they will install at Historic Yellow Springs in November. To further connect the past to the present, Project Portal will also include a curated selection of original PAFA Country School artworks from a private collection. The November exhibition will provide visitors with a “portal” to the past through this extraordinary display.

Don’t write a story yet. Join us on August 16 between 5:30 and 8:30 p.m. for a community picnic, a chance to speak with the artists and a special group of local residents who will share in this exciting experience and learn all the details. Bring your camera and imagination and see what magic might happen. Or, if you cannot attend the picnic, please plan on attending throughout the course of the weekend.

Nothing quite like this has happened in the village of Chester Springs since PAFA ended their Country School. We are simply thrilled at the prospects of what the results will be this time and you will be the first to hear about it.

I hope you will join us and if you have any questions, please call me directly at (610) 827-7414, extension 14.

-Rob Lukens, Director of Historic Yellow Springs

Hope to see everyone there!

Shaun M. Baer